PAOC Spotlights

Meet Prof. Daniel Cziczo

Tue June 28th, 2011

PAOC is delighted to welcome new faculty member, atmospheric chemist, Professor Daniel James Cziczo (pronounced Cit-so). Prof. Cziczo comes to us from PNNL where he has been a Senior Scientist in the Atmospheric Science and Global Change Division and Director of the Atmospheric Measurement Lab in the Fundamental Science Directorate since 2007.


Recorded during a visit to MIT this Spring, get to know a little more about Prof. Cziczo and his work in this video interview

Prof. Cziczo is particularly interested in the interrelationship of particulate matter and cloud formation. His research utilizes laboratory and field studies to elucidate how small particles interact with water vapor to form droplets and ice crystals which are important players in the Earth’s climate system. Experiments include using small cloud chambers in the laboratory to mimic atmospheric conditions that lead to cloud formation and observing clouds in situ from remote mountaintop sites or through the use of research aircraft. Dan’s current research interests include: Chemical composition of atmospheric aerosols with an emphasis on their effect on cloud formation mechanisms, Earth's radiative budget, and meteoritic debris and launch vehicle emissions in the atmosphere.

Accompanying him, though not scheduled to arrive until after the start of the Fall term, is a University of Washington graduate student Beth Friedman (co-advised by Prof. Cziczo and Prof. Joel Thornton at UW). Beth is investigating the role of aerosols on mixed-phase cloud formation. She uses mass spectrometry to determine the chemical composition of the particles which form droplets and ice crystals. One specific project has been to show that anthropogenic black carbon does not effectively form liquid or ice clouds. Prof. Cziczo will also be advising new student Sarvesh Garimella.

For the next few weeks, Dan will be focussed mainly on lab setup although he will also be starting analysis of particles collected during NASA's MACPEX study of cirrus clouds earlier this year. His new office is 54-1324. His email is

You can read more about Cziczo's activities at the Cziczo Group page here.

Three Recent Papers:

Hiranuma N., M. Kohn, M. S. Pekour, D. A. Nelson, J. E. Shilling, and D. J. Cziczo, Droplet activation, separation, and compositional analysis: Laboratory studies and atmospheric measurements, A.M.T.D. 4, 691 (2011) [pdf]
Pekour, M. and D. J. Cziczo, Wake Capture, Particle Breakup and Other Artifacts Associated with Counterflow Virtual Impaction, Aero. Sci. Tech. 45, 748 (2011) [pdf]

Friedman, B., G. Kulkarni, J. Beránek, A. Zelenyuk, J. A. Thornton, and D. J. Cziczo, Ice Nucleation and Droplet Formation by Bare and Coated Soot Particles, accepted at J. Geophys. Res. (2011)